During last week’s federal leadership debate, Jack Layton mentioned that Stephane Dion had supported the Harper government 43 times. Forty-three became a refrain during the course of Jack Layton’s public appearances last week. It can be an effective tactic because people tend to remember numbers–just check the magazine covers at the newsstand next time and notice how many times numbers appear.
In response to the slate of announcements by the Liberals and the NDP in recent days, Prime Minister Harper has questioned how the parties are going to pay for their promises. On one hand, it’s an ironic comment from the PM considering he made several spending announcements in the days leading up to the election. On another level, it’s a rather clever ploy, in my opinion, to appeal to Canadians by scaring them. It may prove to be an effective tool given what is happening in the US with its imploding financial system, the persistent hangover from the credit crisis and the shaky economy (not as sound as John McCain would have us all believe). There is talk of a spillover effect into Canada, which means spending announcements might not translate into votes.
Driving home from work, I listened to the 6:00 pm news on CBC radio. While the United States’ imploding financial system dominated the news, I took note of coverage of the Canadian election campaign. First up: promises by the Liberals and NDP for new childcare spaces, 125,000 and 150,000, respectively. Hmmm… haven’t we heard this issue before? I think it was a policy put forward and started by the Liberals a decade ago. Will either party really follow through if elected? I’m not convinced.